Halp!, a Fud is eatin' my Fud

I promised a blog post about FudCon, and this is it. For starters, FudCon was awesome. Overall, I didn't get as much actual lines of code done as I would have liked, but it was very productive all the same. A big thank you goes to Max and all the others who made FudCon possible. It was great to actually meet some of the Fedora hackers I've gotten to know over the past eight months. I got the chance to sit down and talk to a bunch of different people and flesh out a bunch of different ideas, some more alcohol skewed than others, over the weekend. Hopefully there'll be alot of good coming out of them.

The Sessions

The first hacking session was great. Between everything else, I managed to get about 70% of the security features I wanted to stick into Smolt. Most of the details need to be fleshed out, but I can safely say, Smolt is very very anonymous. If you feel your identity has been compromised, just ask for a new one; it will be fully automated. Also, Lee took some of our queries to our MySQL backend, and optimized them, so I'll be integrating that work in over the weekend.

I also got the chance to listen in to the work that Paul Frields, our newest fearless leader, and the rest of the Fedora Board members are putting together. We're in good hands.


Michael Tiemann's talk was very interesting. One thing that struck me the most is how companies are coming on to the Open Source bandwagon wholesale. They switch their entire stack to open source components, install RHEL on every box and then ask "How can we be more open source?" To be honest, this sounds too much like a religion, and not enough like a solution. The skeptic in me wonders how much of "Open Source" is really understood by the execs running all these companies. Well, assuming they do get it, (and the optimist in me hopes they do,) we discussed how Fedora can help. Something that came up quite often is the infrastructure that Fedora has already. As a group, we coordinate a huge global development team, providing such sundry resources as file servers, application servers, development applications, IDEs, discussion forums, project management software, and even VOIP service. I'd like to coin the term "Salon Fedora", which is what I feel Fedora is going to turn into. It is a virtual salon where developers can come together and discuss ideas openly, with the chance to develop them, and see them deployed into the wild. It is a link between the business hacking community and the hobbiest hacking community. (If you don't like the name, please feel free to think up a new one.)


The second talk I went to is the Pyjigdo talk given by Fedora Unity. Fedora Unity has been using Jigdo and other tools to develop their Respins of Fedora. I also went to their third talk about revisor, and between the two of them, it was great to see how the entire Fedora Unity stack comes together software wise. Also, thanks to Jon and Dutchie showing off how to write a plugin for Revisor, I have a couple of fun ideas for Wevisor which I'll go into at the end.


The fourth talk is an interesting one. On one of the mailing lists, there has been heated discussion about our init system, and how we are going to move forward in the future. Casey Dahlin has a no nonsense approach to building a new init system, but I was happy for the my first chance to see how Fedora Developers resolve these conflicts in person. I suggested to Casey that he have someone record the discussion, because it seemed like it would be a great way to show the world that sometimes Fedora developers can do things amicably. Wishful thinking led to none other than Paul doing the recording, with everyone interested contributing what we needed to. Between people from the RHEL side of things to long term Fedora people to ex-Debian ethusiasts like myself, we were able to go over all the issues involved in switching to Upstart. It'll be interesting to see how one more Ubuntu tool integrates into Fedora, just like they use our tools like PulseAudio.


The fifth talk was just fun. I got to meet Seth Vidal, and talk about Yum. I wish I could have seen something about writing plugins for Yum, but it it was fun to talk about why Fedora doesn't do live upgrades the way that Debian does. Funny thing is, I've stopped missing that feature in some ways.


Finally, there was Luke Macken and Toshio's Turbogears session. Given the whole complexity of Smolt, it was funny to see Luke make things look easy again. Luke's got a great eye for making presentations, so if you missed it, I highly recommend you see the slides and notes. They are put together very well.


FudPub was... well... FudPub. First, we all went for various pork and other products with beer on the side at the Flying Saucer. I fortunately ducked out of the Karaoke, and hung around the bar next door having something like 10 shots of Jäger. Great way to end the day.

Hackfest Two

So Jäger in the night, very cool. The next morning, not so cool. I don't know how it happened, but I woke up to find myself talking to Bobby Frank the next morning about Wevisor, and how to make it not suck. Right in the middle of a pretty mild hangover, I find myself talking to Jon and Dutchie about how we can go about integrating Wevisor into Revisor better. I missed the chance to work on Wevisor last summer, but now I can have the opportunity to do something interesting there.

Holy Crap, I have alot to do

So for the next couple of weeks, I'll be working on Smolt and Wevisor things. Hopefully I'll have that development done by then, and somehow squeeze in working on Haskell. Following that I'll be working on more Haskell, and coordinating some tools with a few other devs, but I'll have more comments on that. Finally, I'll be working on HaPPs a little bit, getting it to work on Fedora, because we'll need something to showcase what Haskell can do.

I feel a little like I bit off more than I can chew. I'll have to try to take things one bite at a time....

2 flames:

Paul W. Frields zei

It was great meeting you, Yaakov. Sorry I ended up sticking that camera in your face so often during the "Down with SysVinit" session. That's your payback for having interesting things to say. :-)

Yankee zei

I suppose that was my fault in the first place. :P